Since 2010, much has changed for Islamists in the Middle East. Islamist parties gained prominence and major government roles in countries such as Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco. It appeared that Islamists’ time had come; however, the tides have shifted in recent years. The AKP, once considered a model of Islamist democracy, has become more authoritarian under the presidency of Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey. Meanwhile, the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood’s decline, which began with the 2013 coup, continues toward radicalization and violence. What factors underlie these trends: ideology, politics or economics? How has the Arab Spring shaped the dynamics of Islamist politics in the region? What are the implications for U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East? Prominent scholars explored these and other questions about the state of political Islam and the challenges that lie ahead. The event was sponsored by the Baker Institute’s Center for the Middle East.
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Nathan Brown, Ph.D.
Elliott School of International Affairs, The George Washington University
Jillian Schwedler, Ph.D.
Hunter College, City University of New York
Fevzi Bilgin, Ph.D.
Moderator: A.Kadir Yildrim, Ph.D., Research Scholar, Baker Institute